Campaign 2010

Feb 04, 2011

Buerkle Unaware She Had Government Funded Health Care

At a town hall meeting on Thursday, Representative Ann Marie Buerkle (NY-25) told the crowd that taxpayers didn’t pay anything for her health insurance.  Only after being informed by a member of her staff did she correct this false statement. 

 

“Representative Ann Marie Buerkle claims to be fiscally responsible but can’t even keep track of the thousands of dollars taxpayers are spending each year on her own health care,” said Josh Schwerin, Northeast Regional Press Secretary at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.  “Now that she knows that her constituents are paying for her health insurance even while she voted to take theirs away, will Representative Ann Marie Buerkle end the hypocrisy and give up her government funded care?”

 

Representative Anne Marie Buerkle opposed an effort to make sure that repeal of health insurance reform would only move forward if a majority of Members of Congress gave up their own government health care. She even opposed a simple measure to make transparent whether Members of Congress accepted government-subsidized health care.   

 

According to recent polling, “Most Americans think incoming Congressmen who campaigned against the health care bill should put their money where their mouth is and decline government provided health care now that they're in office.”

 

Background

 

  • “Buerkle, who voted to repeal the health care reform act, was twice asked about the health insurance she receives as a government employee. At first she said she couldn’t understand why people were so interested in her health insurance, and that taxpayers didn’t pay anything for it. She later corrected herself after being handed a note from a staffer.” [Post Standard, 2/3/11]

 

  • Taxpayer funded health care for new Members of Congress begins on February 1, 2011. [POLITICO, 11/15/11]

 

  • Representative Anne Marie Buerkle voted against a measure that would require a majority of Members of the House of Representatives and Senate to waive their FEHB benefits before enactment of the repeal legislation would go into effect. [H.R. 2,  Vote #13, 1/19/11]

 

  • Representative Anne Marie Buerkle voted to hide her government funded health care from constituents. [H Res 5, Vote #5, 1/05/11]

 

  • Polling shows most Americans oppose health care hypocrisy. “Most Americans think incoming Congressmen who campaigned against the health care bill should put their money where their mouth is and decline government provided health care now that they're in office.” [Public Policy Polling, 11/23/10]

 

  • At least 21 House Republicans who ran in strong opposition to government health care have publicly announced they will not accept congressional health care.  They include Representatives Paul Gosar (AZ-01), Ben Quayle (AZ-03), Cory Gardner (CO-04), Rich Nugent (FL-05), Daniel Webster (FL-08), Sandy Adams (FL-24), Joe Walsh (IL-08), Bob Dold (IL-10), Bobby Schilling (IL-17), Jeff Landry (LA-03), Tim Walberg (MI-07), Frank Guinta (NH-01), Nan Hayworth (NY-19), Chris Gibson (NY-20), Bill Johnson (OH-06), Mike Kelly (PA-03), Mike Fitzpatrick (PA-08), Stephen Fincher (TN-08), Quico Canseco (TX-23), Scott Rigell (VA-02) and David McKinley (WV-01).

 

  • In 2011, according to Office of Personnel Management the federal government will pick up about 70% of the costs of the health insurance plan. [Evansville Courier & Press, 1/23/11]

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